Don Draper’s Guide to Fantastic Writing

There’s no doubt about it. Mad Men is a must-watch TV show if you are a creative individual.

Don Draper is the most creative alpha male on TV. Well, some might say Harvey Specter is pretty ingenious too, but… Don is something else. Dark and moody and mysterious, but also a genius when it comes to sipping whisky and crafting the perfect slogan.

He makes it all look freaking cool…

All of them do. Peggy, Don, even Roger, who does nothing these days but loaf around and spit out hilarious one-liners.

It’s not just them. It’s their work.

They sit around thinking up the perfect ad.

Then they convince their clients to spend a ton of bucks on it. Millions of people fall all over themselves to buy the product, shifting consumer culture, spawning billion-dollar industries, becoming household names.

And they do it all with nothing but words. How cool is that? Don’t tell me you never fantasized about your words changing the world?

I know, I know. It’s just a TV show. It’s not real life. But, contrary to what you might think, there are some great principles being presented in this show, principles that apply to great writing and great blogging too.

Continue reading “Don Draper’s Guide to Fantastic Writing”

Advertisements

Smart Writing

Smart people use big words, right?

Does it mean that using big words makes you sound smarter?

Well, according to this study, the answer is no.

Irony: The title of the study’s title is Consequences of Erudite Vernacular Utilized Irrespective of Necessity: Problems with Using Long Words Needlessly. 

In fact, using words no one understands makes you sound small-minded. To sound smart, you must stop trying to sound smart. Smart writing is simple writing, a relevant idea delivered clearly and directly.

Here are the best ways for smart writing… Continue reading “Smart Writing”

Four Simple Steps to Writing Blog Posts Faster

Time. We can spend it, but we can’t get more of it. Once spent, it’s gone forever.

Time. The most valuable commodity, and we never seem to have enough of it.

So… what if I were to tell you there’s a simple four step system that helps you write blog posts faster?

And no, I don’t mean 300 word posts, I mean longer articles that engage, inform, and entertain your readers.

Four simple steps. Continue reading “Four Simple Steps to Writing Blog Posts Faster”

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Bloggers

Do you want to be a successful blogger? Do ideas for posts randomly pop into your head whenever, wherever? Do you think about ways to improve your blog?

How to write more? Better? Faster?

Do you study what the most successful bloggers have done to get to where they are right now?

You are not alone. I do this too. It’s one of my passions. To see what makes the difference. What works, what doesn’t, and to understand the why. Because of this, I can write cute posts like this one.

Here are the seven best habits to have as a blogger.

Continue reading “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Bloggers”

Why The Titles You Choose for Your Blog Posts Matter

What is the first thing you notice when browsing a blog’s front page?

What grabs your attention when reading news articles? What makes you want to click on a link?

Yeah, the titles are that important.

And yet most people work hard on a post, and just before they hit that “Publish” button do they stop and think about their title.

It’s not how this works.

First the title, then everything else.

Why?

Because titles can be the difference between having your post read or ignored. Of course, there are no rules that will guarantee your post gets noticed, but you might want to consider some of the following. Continue reading “Why The Titles You Choose for Your Blog Posts Matter”

Top 10 Persuasive Writing Techniques

Admit it. You write because you want to convince your readers to do something or agree with your point of view. Or maybe you want them to be inspired by your words, to apply your teachings and principles, to act on your ideas.

Don’t want to admit it? Okay. This is not an interrogation. I’ll move on then.

Persuasion is the ability to present a certain situation as being beneficial to both parties. You make someone an offer they can’t refuse. Not in a Godfather sense of the way though.

Yes, you need to work at making the other understand that a good deal is being offered.

Weird, right?

And, yes, there are techniques that can help you create a more compelling case.

Here are the ten best persuasive writing techniques.

Prepare for… WORLD DOMINATION! Continue reading “Top 10 Persuasive Writing Techniques”

How to Turn One-Time Readers into Avid Fans

Admit it. You’re guilty of checking your WordPress Stats more often than it’s healthy. And most times, a deep sigh escapes from your soul.

Why is your number of followers so low?

Why aren’t readers flocking to your blog?

Blogging is hard work, but what should you do when your efforts don’t seem to pay off?

Should you just keep writing regardless? Hope that things will change somehow?

You need a new blog strategy, not wishful thinking.

When your blog isn’t doing as well as you’d like, don’t simply step up your efforts. Don’t keep slaving away. Instead, take a step back and review what you’ve done so far. Do you have the right strategy to turn one time readers into avid fans?

If you want to create a simple blog plan that will help you win more readers, answer these four critical questions below. Continue reading “How to Turn One-Time Readers into Avid Fans”

The (Very Short) Ultimate Guide to Blogging

There are hundreds, perhaps thousands, of writing guides out there. But in my opinion, none surpass the simple, direct advice of The Elements of Style by William Strunk, Jr. and E.B.White.

This classic serves up much good advice, especially in the last 20 pages in a section titled “An Approach to Style.” Nowhere have I seen more helpful advice in so few words and with such precision.

If (for shame) you don’t already have this reference in your library, I will leave it to you to explore it in depth. But I would like to provide you with eight important writing tips as they apply to blogging. Continue reading “The (Very Short) Ultimate Guide to Blogging”

Blogger’s Block? Here’s How to Beat it

Too many of your posts start with an apology for not having been around of late? The joy you first brought to blogging now a distant memory?

Looks like a case of blogger’s block. Don’t worry… there is a cure.

It’s largely a matter of making friends with your creative mind. The reason so many of us find this difficult is that our education has trained us to respond to problems only with linear, rational, conscious thought.

Willpower, discipline, and good old-fashioned work may squeeze another blog post out of you but to produce words effortlessly, to connect with the joy and optimism and inspiration which makes it all worthwhile, to be as good as you can be, you need to know how to nurture abstraction and your hard-working subconscious.

First off, stop focusing on your block and start thinking about establishing flow. Flow is that delectable condition where all we writers have to do is turn up at the page and get ‘em down. Below are nine tried-and-tested methods – four daily practices, five writing practices – for keeping in flow, not just for the next blog post but for the rest of your writing life. Continue reading “Blogger’s Block? Here’s How to Beat it”